While there is now widespread understanding that extreme income and wealth inequality is growing and has negative impacts on society, most proposed solutions fail to address deeper systemic drivers. If we misdiagnose an illness, we are likely to prescribe an insufficient or even dangerous remedy. If we misdiagnose the causes of inequality, we will likely put forward misguided solutions.
For example, if we believe that inequality is primarily driven by changes in technology and globalization—what economists call a skills-biased technological change— then our solution will focus on investing in workforce education and skills expansion. While technological change and globalization have supercharged inequalities, they are not the primary drivers.
My new report, Reversing Inequality: Unleashing the Transformative Potential of an Equitable Economy, co-published with the Institute for Policy Studies and the Next Systems Project goes beyond false solutions to understand the systemic drivers and the challenges of concentrated wealth and power.